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  • Writer's pictureKathy Troxler

Horse Training Fundamentals

Vinnie is a three year old gelding and he doesn't know much. But he knows a little. He did not learn to stand tied as early as he should. He didn't learn to lead like I'd teach one of mine. That said, he's catching up least on the leading part-he standing tied part he's not so fond of. But he does understand the principle of "yielding to pressure" well enough to not get into too much trouble-he doesn't "set back" and panic when tied. But he does throw a temper tantrum. The answer to that will be Vinny will stand tied...a lot!

The very cool thing about Vinnie is his "base line" personality. He's fairly brave and very curious and he's smart! The video below is a good demonstration what his "threat level" is...he doesn't think a tarp is very scary, and that's good. But I will need to test him as we go along and find out what he does think is scary and then begin the work of having him understand that even when he does feel like somethings "not a good thing", that as his handler (and alpha) I have the final say on how we're going to handle a situation.

Before all that can happen, we need to make sure that we have enough "language" skill to be able to keep Vinny safe. He needs to know that "whoa" means stop and all will be well, and, "cluck" means move. The plan...voice commands while leading and lunging. If he's good (doesn't have to be perfect) with "whoa", then making sure that he's "cool" with ropes being around all four legs as preparation for long lining...then the real fun stuff begins!

We really weren't planning on video of Vinny, but Mike whipped out his cell phone so here we are! The pictures below, using my fancy "bandana flag" were done earlier in the month.

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